Monday, April 06, 2009

Batter up: New York Yankees

It's that mystical, wonderful time of year where you commit to a team who you know fully well won't win. In honour of an popular Internet meme, we're presenting lists of 25 things tangentially about each Major League Baseball team. At bat: The New York Yankees.
  1. One problem with gauging how CC Sabathia's signing will pan out in New York. Rob Neyer said it first, but there isn't a prediction model to use for 290-pound starting pitchers.

  2. One Buffalo columnist imagined a major-league roster drawn entirely from the best players age 25 and under. One big takeaway: He didn't have a single Yankee.

  3. That knee-jerk impulse about how Allen James Burnett only manages to throw 200 innings when he's in his contract year (and the one time he wasn't, he needed elbow surgery) was probably right.

  4. Plain old Alex Rodriguez will be fine once he's back from hip surgery. It's the principle of the uncluttered mind. As for that photo of him kissing himself in the mirror: His advisors told him that he better start kissing some ass if he wanted to improve his image. He obviously misunderstood.

  5. The early word on the New Yankee Stadium (the House That Lack of Couth Built) is that there's a jet stream out to right-centre field. The Yankees hit seven homers in the first two cash-grabs exhibition games there. Mark Teixeira, Hideki Matsui, Jorge Posada, Nick Swisher and Johnny Damon front a pretty left-handed lineup.

  6. Stop saying Derek Jeter had a bad season by his standards (.300/.363/.408) last season. The law of diminishing returns kicked in for him around the middle of '07. He'll be voted into to start yet another all-star game and should still get on base at good steady clip, but he left the basestealing and extra-base power back somewhere in 2006. In the field, there are NFL nosetackles who cover more turf.

  7. They will be the best third-place team money can buy.

  8. Right-hander Phil Hughes, or as he's alternately known, The Reason Johan Santana's A Met, is still only 22 years old.

  9. They have overtaken the Red Sox. It will cost a family of four $410 to attend a Yankees home game this season. Fenway Park had been the most expensive place for the past few seasons.

  10. The upshot of the Yankees spending $423.5 million on three free agents is it's a reprise of the '80s, when they ignored the farm system. This time around, it's been tagged The Joba Impact.

  11. Closer Mariano Rivera is still money. The heir apparent in the farm system is Mark Melancon, if Rivera ever retires.

  12. Damon and Matsui are free agents after this season, so presumably that gives them added motivation.

  13. Rivera and lefty Damaso Marte are the only relievers earning more than $1 million. Does that make the other relievers the equivalent of underpaid domestics?

  14. Totally baseless parallel: Remember when the Montreal Canadiens moved out of the Forum in 1996 and lost out in the first round of the playoffs after dropping all three games at home? It could like that for the first little while at the new stadium.

  15. Joba Chamberlain is in the starting rotation, at least for this month.

  16. The $180-million man, Mark Teixeira, typically has slow starts, but fortunately, the New York media corps is pretty patient and laid-back.

  17. Second baseman Robinson Cano should have a bit of a bounce-back season after hitting a sucktacular .271/.305/.410 in '08. He needed a late-season run just to get his numbers up that high.

  18. The football game in the novel version of North Dallas Forty was set at Yankee Stadium (the Giants played there in the '60s). Words to live by: "Somehow, I always felt closer to the greats when I was hung over."

  19. Yogi Berra has collaborated on a book with Allen Barra. Yogi is probably the only living Yankee who everyone liked and he turns 84 years old in May.

  20. Co-chairman Hank Steinbrenner is secretly a Blue Jays fan. Spread the word.

  21. The only way the Yankees' image could take more of a beating is if they had AIG's logo on their jerseys. What global ports empire would do a thing like that? Sorry, bad example.

  22. Since neither NHL team in Ontario made the playoffs, you could vow not to shave until centrefielder Brett Gardner hits his first home run of the season. Gardner, AKA The Squirrel, has gone yard only nine times in four seasons.

  23. Gossip websites probably just random enter names into some beta application which generates come up with an article. You're 10 years late to the party if you make a joke about how Derek Jeter and Jennifer Aniston should be together.

  24. They're aging, schlerotic, in need of fresh ideas and have been suffering steady setbacks since 2005. But enough about the Republican Party.

  25. Jaded Jays-fan backbiting aside, Yankees fans is good people, especially Jason at It Is About The Money, Stupid. You have to be courteous and friendly. Please remember that there but for the grace of God goes Roy Halladay's future team.


Jason @ IIATMS said...


I am beyond honored (or do I have to spell it 'honoured') to be so noteworthy here.

Thanks, man. Seriously.

Jason @ IIATMS

eyebleaf said...

Down with the Evil Empire!

I hope Burnett goes on the 1000 day DL. I also wish evil upon Fat.Fat. Sabathia, Teixeira, Damon, Joba, and Cano. Jeter? He's cool.

And, yes Jason, it is "honoured."

Greg said...

I won't boo A.J. when he inevitably starts in Toronto. He may have been petulant at times and unreliable up until his contract year last season, but hey -- he's going to find out what New York media types are like now. If he goes into the tank like he did in Toronto... watch out.

1000 Hot, Hot Suns of Hatred I cast towards Yankee Nation again.

dinologic (Dean D) said...

"The Yankees hit seven homers in the first two cash-grabs exhibition games there."

I know this is all meant to be humorous, but it should be noted that the two exhibition games were a "trial run" of sorts to work out any problems they might have at the new stadium. From what I understand, the PA system went down at one point. It's good practice to get things like that out of the way before the season officially starts. And FWIW, tickets were available at very affordable prices (some less than $20) on StubHub right up to game day so I don't think the revenue was as much of a motivating factor as you'd like it to be. If it were, why wouldn't they do this EVERY year?

(I'll eat my words if they do it again next year, but really if they did, I would be glad to go since it's going to be damn near impossible to get tickets without paying a king's ransom for the foreseeable future.)

sager said...

Fair point, Dean. One could argue the Yankees had little to do with a soft secondary ticket market; that might have been more because it was exhibition baseball.